Russian Federation starts blocking Telegram messenger - regulator

Pavel Durov's September 2017 post on Telegram explains why he can't visit Iran and Russia. Source Telegram

Pavel Durov's September 2017 post on Telegram explains why he can't visit Iran and Russia. Source Telegram

April 16, Roskomnadzor ordered the operators to start blocking Telegram across the country. Russia's telecom and media watchdog, the Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media, has received the ruling by Moscow's Tagansky District Court on restricting access to Telegram's products in Russian Federation.

The decision followed repeated refusal by the company to hand over encryption keys for its messages to Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB).

Russian web service providers now have 24 hours to fulfill the order.

"The FSB's requirements to provide access to private conversations of users are unconstitutional, baseless, which can not be fulfilled technically and legally", he said.

In its court filing, media regulator Roskomnadzor said Telegram had failed to comply with its legal requirements as a "distributor of information".

Pavel Chikov, the lawyer who represented Telegram's interests during the court dispute with the authorities, wrote on Twitter on Monday morning that the Telegram.org website had become unavailable.

On April 13, Moscow's Tagansky District Court upheld the telecom watchdog's motion to block access to the Telegram messenger in Russia for its failure to provide the keys to decrypt user messages to the Russian Federal Security Service, the FSB. After the court verdict was announced, they said the planned to file an appeal.

Telegram's founder and CEO, Pavel Durov, was a pioneer of social media in Russian Federation but left the country in 2014.

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